That Didn’t Work

Now what?

What happens after you try something and it doesn’t work?

Deal with the Consequences

If there are consequences, deal with those first. If you have made promises, or commitments, honour them or apologize and undo them.

Forgive Yourself

Forgive yourself. There will be a part of you that is ashamed. You are thinking you could have done more or should have done it differently or something. Let that part go. At this point you are feeling pain and blame. You won’t be able to learn and make progress until you let that go. Later on, you will examine what happened to learn for next time. So forgive yourself.

Centre Yourself

Take a breath and centre yourself. You want to be able to come at the next steps from a place of strength, rather than reacting. Lift your head and pull your shoulders back. Really, do it, it will make you feel stronger. Body language reflects our feelings, and it can lead our feelings.

Congratulate Yourself

Congratulate yourself for having the courage to try something! You are already a hero! We need people like you to keep doing what you do. Thank you for leading the way.

Examine What Happened

Now, examine what happened. Process it in the way that work best for you. Journal it, write it out, talk to trusted people, go for long walks, create a vision board, whatever gives works for you. You are looking for the difference between what you had hoped would happen and what really happened and why there is a difference. It could be that no one wanted what you were trying to do, that you didn’t have the resources to do it, you didn’t know all the steps to do it, or that you executed it wrong. Unless you know that answer, every other project you do, will fail in the same way.

This is where the key – take time to think – is so important. The more the thinking we are doing makes us uncomfortable and I can assure you thinking about failure makes me very uncomfortable, the more important it is.

How do you figure it out? Ask people. Compare your project to successful ones. Try breaking it down and doing small experiments with each piece. For instance, send out a poll asking people about what you offered: the subject, delivery method, price and outcomes.

Next Time

Take that learning and start thinking about the next one. No one has succeeded without going through this process again and again, until they succeeded, and even then.

My Failure

This post comes out of our attempt to release a program. I’m ready to do the examination part, I suspect I will find that what we were offering is the problem, no one wants it. There are enough e-courses out there so that the delivery isn’t the problem. Our marketing plan wasn’t well thought out, and that needs work, too, but to inform our inner circle about it and not get a single sign up, even for the free course, makes me believe that the ‘what’ is the problem.

There’s more work to do there and any feedback would be appreciated.

Don’t Let a Good Failure Go to Waste

It sucks when it doesn’t work. Rather than just wallow and ignore it, I’m going to use it to get better and to make the next one more likely to work. I’m following Ash Maurya and his Lean Stack. His angle on Lean is the experimentation piece. Have a look here http://leanstack.com/lessons/leanstack/overview

We Need You

We need you to do what you do best. We need you to keep bringing your A game. We are your cheering squad! Go!

 

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